Movies are immersive. They have a way of drawing you in and making you feel one with the struggles and victories of the main characters. When you watch movies about addiction, it can evoke a significant amount of emotion. If you’ve never faced addiction, movies may tell you that you want to steer clear of abusing substances. Meanwhile, if you (or a loved one) is facing addiction, it can be an even more moving experience.
How Addiction Can Go on for So Long
No one uses drugs or alcohol with the idea that they’ll become addicted. They might use them because their friends are using them. They might use substances because they feel it’s the socially acceptable thing to do. They might even use substances because they’re trying to forget other problems and to not feel anything in the moment.
There are so many movies that depict drugs in a fun way — until they don’t. They may show people using drugs and alcohol at a party without a second thought. However, many movies get real. They show the effects of addiction.
Denial is a big part of the addiction process. People might deny having a problem or deny the severity of it. There are plenty of tests that identify drug use but not drug addiction. No one wants to come forward and say that they have a problem.
People might simply choose not to view their substance abuse as a problem. They may even use more substances to forget all about it. If they start to wean themselves off of the drugs, withdrawal symptoms can send them back into using.
By viewing movies where characters are abusing drugs and alcohol, people might identify that they’re addicted. Or, their friends can use the movies to discuss addiction more freely. People can use movies to find addiction treatment, therapy, and support groups that show how addictions start and how people can treat them.
Understanding You Have a Problem
Not everyone identifies that they have a problem. You might be ignorant to the fact that you’re addicted. Drinking several glasses (or bottles) a day may have become normalized. Using drugs on a nightly basis may be a way to get through the week. Whatever you’re telling yourself, you have decided that there is no problem that needs to be addressed.
This is why movies about addiction can be important. It can show that you do, in fact, have a problem. If you identify with the character who has a substance abuse problem, it may be that the two of you share many similarities.
In many instances, you won’t be able to face that you have a problem until your loved ones stage an intervention. This is when friends and family members come together to point out your addiction. They know that you’re suffering and they have a plan to help you overcome it.
Top Movies About Addiction
There are many different movies about alcohol and drug addiction. You may watch them on your own to see that you have similar issues as the characters. You may watch them as a way to gain an understanding of what a loved one is going through.
Movies about addiction can be inspirational if you give them a chance. Additionally, they may help you realize that it’s time to admit that there’s a problem.
Some of the movies have happy endings. Others don’t. Whether you or a loved one is dealing with addiction, you want a happy ending.
But certain movies may remind you that drugs and alcohol can be dangerous and help lead to sobriety. They can also provide breakthroughs to help you learn about addiction and how alcohol and drug rehab centers can help.
Some movies about alcohol and drug addiction include:
- Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
- Harvard Man
- Requiem for a Dream
- Mad Love
- The White Sound
- The Misfortunates
- The Lost Weekend
- Drugstore Cowboy
Different movies have different approaches to addiction. Characters may commit crimes in order to gain access to their substance of choice. Others might be impaired or experience bad trips, showing just how dangerous addiction can be.
The Importance of Peer Support Groups
Many people join a 12-step program for addiction such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous to bolster their recovery. The programs encourage you to come to terms with who you are, what you have done, and who you want to become.
It can be difficult to do all this on your own. Most people need help to recover. Even though your friends and family members may want to help, they might not know how.
You need the help of your peers. People who have been where you are and have come out on the other side can help you through this difficult time. Peer support can help you find hope, make amends, and even get to a point where you can help others.
By utilizing peer support groups such as 12-step groups and non 12-step groups, people can find mentors. With this help, people can learn how to recover and move through the rest of their lives without turning to substance abuse again.
After watching various movies about addiction, you may realize that some people are helpful while others are dragging you toward additional problems. You may have people who continue to use or continue to deny that you have a problem. Continuing to spend time with them could threaten your sobriety.
The good news is that peer support is out there, you just have to find the right people. Many rehab centers can help you find 12-step groups and other forms of peer support to help you get the help you need.
In the end, it comes down to knowing that there’s a problem – with you or the others around you. Movies can make you feel something. If you’re noticing similarities between yourself and characters with addiction, it’s time that you do something about it. In the meantime, watching movies that focus on addiction can help you to remember that it’s a path you don’t want to travel.
health.harvard.edu – What Is Addiction?
mayoclinic.org – Drug Addiction (Substance Use Disorder)
health.mo.gov – What Is an Intervention?
imdb.com – Top 80 Alcohol/Drug Addiction Movies
ncbi.nlm.nih.gov – Benefits of Peer Support Groups in the Treatment of Addiction